Tom Starling

I am supporting the Engagement and Consultation team with a variety of projects including building and redesigning tools for staff

Age: 24

University: BA in Philosophy and Politics, University of Reading, with 6 months abroad in the University of Rhode Island

I’m currently placed within the Engagement and Consultation team, part of Strategic and Corporate Services. The team has a broad remit, so I’ve been lucky enough to get involved in a wide variety of projects. As the headline quote mentions – I’m working with a Corporate Director to build a resource management oversight tool for her directorate, and working with a colleague to redesign a subsection of the internal intranet. Separate to that, I’m working on a review of the current state of our entire intranet, providing evidence to support change when we either replace or redesign it. Recently, I’ve also been involved in filming and editing, supporting colleagues with a number of short engagement films that we are creating.

In my second placement – with Adults Phase 3 Transformation – I was initially heavily involved in organising and helping to run a large study involving over a hundred participants, designed to provide an accurate picture of activity undertaken by various roles in OPPD and the care teams. As the placement developed, my role was focused around providing in-depth data analytics on the results from the study, and using that data to support the business case for transformation.

I was placed at iESE for my first placement, iESE are a not-for-profit consultancy that specialise in public sector transformations.  In iESE, I worked with other local councils on a variety of projects, including a review into Disabled Facilities Grants and a council wide review into Support Services provision. It was particularly interesting to get a first-hand experience of other councils and their processes, and the skills I learned with iESE are still standing me in good stead two placements later!

Why did you apply for the Kent Graduate Programme - Management Stream?

The Kent Graduate Programme really appealed to me due to the opportunity to experience a series of placements in 4 different areas within the council over the 2 year programme. I knew before I applied that I was interested in working either in local government or in a charity, and the fantastic breadth of experiences KCC offered really sold the scheme to me. Not only does the scheme provide the potential for varied experiences, it is paired with a robust personal development scheme one day a week, where the graduate cohort work together on a project and also receive further training and development.

Current placement:

Consultation and Engagement, Strategic and Corporate Services

You should apply if you are:

  • passionate about local government work
  • looking for a scheme with fantastic opportunities for progression and personal development.